- 25 July 2009 | Kiteboarding
A record number of kitesurfers made the pilgrimage to north Norfolk last weekend (10-12 July) to compete in the second round of the British Kite Surfing Association national championships.
Over 50 of the UK’s top kitesurfers endured two frustrating days of calm conditions in Norfolk before the wind picked up and sparked one of the busiest days of competition in the BKSA’s history.
With all the heats in the three-day competition condensed into a single day, “Super Sunday” provided plenty of action for spectators on the beaches at Hunstanton and Heacham.
Mark Ward said: “With the largest fleet the BKSA has ever had, achieving an almost full set of results in a single day was a tall order, but we did achieve a first of running two comps at the same time.
“If the BKSA competitions continue to grow at the current rate, this event has shown that the tour will inevitably produce more world champions of the future in all disciplines. In almost all classes to get to the top you are going to have to deal with a variety of conditions and compete against opponents who want it just as much as you do.”
With Heacham providing the more favourable conditions early in the day, the competitors finally took to the water as organisers ran through the preliminary heats in each division.
There were many interesting moments and some top class riding, interrupted from time to time by a black flag as the wind would drop. Several riders demonstrated how to land a trick and ride up the shingle, whilst Jo Wilson, two-times British Pro Woman’s champion four years ago let everyone know that she is as strong now than she was back then.
With the sea retreating fast it was decided to move back to Hunstanton main beach to finish things off, setting up two competition zones to make the most of the rapidly dropping wind.
The Juniors, as the largest class in the fleet, was going to take a bit of time to get through. The wind was there for most of the comp but towards 4pm it started to get sketchy and heats were frequently getting black flagged. It was a frustrating time for many, including the larger guys in the fleet.
Over in the other comp zone Head Beach Marhall Glenn Foley was doing everything he could to keep things moving. After a successful Pro comp he moved onto the Amateur ladies and managed to complete this, followed by the senior men. Unfortunately this was at the time the wind was starting to drop so everyone agreed to have a slope style best trick comp with each competitor having 3 goes.
Spectators and competitors were enjoying the format and they managed to get through everyone. The same was attempted with the Amateur Men but unfortunately the wind just gave up and it was not possible.
Despite all this it was good to see the spirit with which everyone entered the alternative formats and all were keen to get to a formal result at the end of the day. Most folk had left the waterline but most of the Amateurs were still down there just hoping that the wind might kick in for just one more blast!
Mark Ward said: “I’d like to thank everyone for rising to the occasion with regard to the compromises we had to make to try and get a full set of results. It was good to see a large number of competitors who were also there to compete just for a bit of fun. Yeah, they like to win, but more than that they enjoy the craic, and come back again and again. These folk do so much to promote the sport in general and encourage those that want to go all the way to the top.
“The Hunstanton event is well organised with a lot going on and so a big thanks to Tony Devenish, the main man behind the local organising and John for all his help. The local council, the orange team, the security, the ladies serving behind the bar, local riders, sponsors and helpers during the event.”
1st Dan Sweeney
2nd Oli Bridge
3rd Tom Bridge
Seniors “ Slope style Best Trick”
1st Pete Whiteley
2nd Mathew Davies
3rd Marcus Hawkins
1st Amy Burger
2nd Sukie Robertson
3rd Megan Griffiths
1st Jo Wilson
2nd Helen Tompson
3rd Hannah Whiteley
1st Sam Light
2nd Luke Whiteside
3rd James Boulding
No result in Am Men as the wind had died !
King Of Watersports Prize went to Sam Light for Front Mobe to Blind